The key to a more successful life is having a superior strategy for living it. Hoping that everything turns out okay is not a strategy.
Your life strategy is especially shaped by your beliefs, values, personal management system, and thus by your decisions about spending your time, energy, money, skills and other resources. After setting your life vision, you should think carefully over your life strategy and the direction it’s taking you in. This blog post will help you with that.
For extraordinary results, you need an extraordinary approach. For extraordinary life, you need an extraordinary strategy.
Even if you don’t have a specific strategy, you do have at least some sort of a strategy. It’s usually a combination of what you’ve learned through primary and secondary socialization, especially from your parents, grandparents, other people who raised you and the schooling system, and later in your life of what is expected from you by social norms in your country, dominating religion etc.
If not any of that, your default strategy is usually what happens to you by chance. For example you end up in an industry where you’ve landed your first job after having sent CVs to numerous companies in different industries.
Having no strategy as a child is a fact, but later on it’s your personal decision. As a child, you can’t take any decisions for yourself. All you can do is observe, learn and try to function in completely dependent relationships. The healthier the environment that you’re raised in, the better off you usually are regarding your life strategy and the better your starting point is when taking complete control over your life.
But even if you were raised in a perfect environment, no one is completely the same as their parents and nor they should be. There’s also the additional fact that times change (your environment), thus sooner or later you have to shape your own life strategy if you want to be happy and successful. Modeling as a life strategy works only to a certain extent.
Your personal power is the key in consciously shaping your life strategy
The more personal power you develop over the years (mastering yourself), the greater the influence you have on how your life will turn out. Somewhere in adolescence, you start to take over the power in different areas of life and soon it’s totally up to you how you will live it.
At the end of the day, you only have two choices – either you follow your own goals or the goals of other people; either you are the pilot of your life or other people are, from your past and your present.
The most important thing you have to be aware of is that you always have a choice. If you don’t like something, there is always a move you can make towards a better life. You don’t betray anyone if you change your beliefs or your values over time.
There’s nothing wrong with choosing to look at the world through different lenses, lenses that suit you better. It’s your life and you should live it completely true to yourself. You have to be yourself since everyone else is taken; you have to be yourself if you want to be happy.
But just being yourself isn’t enough, not even close. You also have to be smart. You want to be happy and successful as well. You want to be different and better. You want to shape a life strategy that will take you to your goals and enable you to experience as much of your life vision as possible.
“I am who I am” should not be an excuse for not playing the game of life smartly, dedicatedly and masterfully. You don’t get a second chance so it’s really important that you regularly think through how you will play the game of life.
Saying that you always have a choice may sound easy, but it’s not. Every change means that you want to achieve a state that’s different from the default; and changing things takes courage, effort, investments etc. The greater the change you want to make in life, the more effort it will take.
The worse your starting position is and the more ambitious goals you have, the more effort it will take to change the course of your life. Your strategy will have to be more superior, you will have to play smarter and work harder.
The world is designed to reward those who master its rules.
The elements of your life strategy
Of course you constantly change your life strategy over the course of your life, especially when you experience new things and epiphanies. Thus you should regularly update your life strategy by having your end goals and your life vision in mind.
Nevertheless your life strategy mainly consists of the following decisions you have to make sooner or later:
- Your mindset and your personality
- Taking care of your physical body and physical appearance
- Formal education
- Informal education and developing competences and skills
- Information intake and communicating strategy
- Your past and relationships with your primary family
- Intimate relationships and your secondary family
- Your sex life
- Relationship with your kids
- Money and investment strategy
- Career strategy
- Your social strategy
- Hobbies and having fun strategy
- Travel and transportation strategy
- Home and your surroundings strategy
- Strategy toward animals and nature
- Art and culture
- Using technology and your digital trail strategy
- Your nation, country and political system
- Spirituality, religion and asking for help
- Taking care of your emotional body
- Dealing with enemies, bad and evil in the world
- Your legacy and social engagement strategy
- When do you want to give up?
Now let's break down one by one.
Your mindset and your personality
The first and most important part of your life strategy is you. You have to make a choice of how much you will bother with yourself and your goals and how much you will just go with the flow. It’s your choice whether you will live your life with the growth mindset or the fixed mindset and that’s probably the key decision you have to make in your life.
I am of course biased towards the growth mindset, but there are definitely many people who live a good life with a fixed mindset as well. The question is what works best for you.
After choosing the growth or fixed mindset, you have to decide how much and when you will compete, and when and where you will cooperate. Cooperating is usually a part of the prestige mindset and competing a part of the dominating mindset. We all have and live both mindsets, the only question is when do we chose one over the other. It’s an important part of your life strategy. For example in sports, you may brutally compete, while at your job you help all your coworkers.
The next decision you’ll have to make is where your mind focus will be, in your past, present or future, and what kind of an outlook you will have to each time frame. For your past, you can focus on negative or positive events. For your present, you can be more hedonistic or more fatalistic. And for your future, you can be goal oriented or surrender yourself to a greater power and posthumous life.
Let’s continue with your personal level of ethics and morality. It doesn’t matter whether your actions lean on the prestige or the dominating mindset, you always have to choose where to draw a morality and ethics line. You may, for example, brutally compete but never take illegal performance enhancing drugs. On the other hand, you may help people in your class to study, but cheat on your test nonetheless.
We have laws that forbid harmful behavior, especially on the physical and material level, meaning they provide security to your body and personal property. But there are still many gray areas and harmful things that are allowed, especially on the emotional level, and different ways of unethically gaining new material things.
You have to decide for yourself what’s right and what’s wrong after the law stops working.
Another important decision is whether you will be more flexible or stubborn in your life. Will you push things to go your way no matter what or will you adapt to different circumstances? It’s a totally different life if you choose one or the other.
There are several other things you have to decide about yourself, like how organized you will be, whether you will be more unique or follow trends, the level of your privacy, how you will deal with obstacles and so on.
- Your life vision, mission, ideal-self and values
- Getting to know yourself, which personal characteristics you will develop and fulfilling your potentials
- Your mindset
- Fixed or Growth mindset – How much will you invest in yourself?
- Abundance or Scarcity mindset
- Optimal thinking or Suboptimal thinking
- Negative thinking or Positive thinking
- Reactive or Proactive thinking
- Dominating mindset or prestige mindset and level of healthy assertiveness
- Your general attitude towards life (optimist, pessimist…)
- Psychology of time
- Your level of ethics and morality
- Embracing change in life and your flexibility level
- Level of personal organization and personal time management system
- Level of privacy
- Developing traits of successful people
- Your role models, dealing with fears, uniqueness vs following trends etc.
Taking care of your physical body and physical appearance
Your body is like your digital avatar, a vessel carrying your soul so you can experience the material world. An important part of your life strategy is how well you will take care of your vessel/avatar (or body, if you want).
The formula is very simple. The more you take care of your body, the better you look, the more energy you have, the longer you will probably live and so on. Taking care of your body is probably one of the best investments in your life strategy. And we all know that.
Why don’t we all do it then? Because it’s not easy. Our body is a very complex mechanism and our mind even more so. Not taking care of your body gives you immediate gratification and consequences are seen only over the years.
Eating that hamburger in front of the TV relaxes you immediately, but you only gain weight over time. Regularly taking care of your body has the opposite mental effect and take real effort. You have to invest and work hard and make sacrifices now at this moment, only to get results somewhere in the future.
Therefore it’s not easy to take care of your body. Anyway, you do have to make a decision of how well and how regularly you will maintain your body. What will be your healthy living strategy? That includes everything from your diet, exercise and hygiene to choosing your personal style and appearance. To be even more specific, as part of your life strategy regarding your body, you have to at least make decisions about:
- Your sleep schedule (how much you sleep, when do you go to sleep)
- Your hygiene level
- Your personal style
- Your posture and body language
- Your exercising strategy
- Your relationship with food (diet)
- Dealing with daily anxiety
- Taking breaks and holidays (rest)
- How often and regularly will you go to a doctor
- Taking medicine and vaccination
- Smoking / drinking / drugs
- Detoxing yourself (fasting, technology detox)
One more thing to mention here is your personal clothing style. Clothes are an important part of communicating who you are. Again it’s your choice how much you will emphasize your uniqueness. It’s on you to decide whether fashion and style will be a part of your life or not.
At first, your formal education is strongly determined by your parents and the place where you live. The material status of your family also has a great influence on the quality of the formal schooling that you can get (private schools etc.). But sometime after high school, the level of formal education you will receive is, in most cases, completely up to you. Probably an even more important decision is which field you will choose.
The more traditional that the career you want is, the more important is a high level of education. If you want to be a doctor, lawyer, scientist etc. formal education is very important. On the other side of the coin, many contemporary jobs don’t even demand high levels of formal education if you are good at a specific skill, like digital design or programming.
Decisions about formal education are tough and many factors are involved. You should consider them all and then make the best decision that’s available to you. When making decisions about the level of your formal education, you should consider at least the following:
- Market trends for different jobs
- Importance of formal education in your chosen career
- The field of study and subjects you will take and why
- The college you will choose and in which state/country
- Grades you will aim at
- Scholarships, taking debt and total financial costs of schooling
- Opportunity-cost of schooling (you could work, earn money and gain experience…)
- Your payoff for investing into a higher level of formal education
- How you will spend your free time outside the formal education process (partying, working, traveling, doing pro bono work…)
You know that the costs of good formal education are getting higher and higher, while on the other hand, formal education is not a guarantee for getting a job anymore. You can find many different opinions and views on importance of formal education, especially if you should get yourself in debt to get a good formal education or not, but at the end of the day, it’s totally up to you.
It depends on your life situation, your goals, the career you aim at, your strategy etc. You should systematically analyze it, think different scenarios over and then make a sound decision.
Informal education and developing competences and skills
We all know now that formal education is not enough to develop your competences and skills and thus achieve your maximum potential. You have to achieve your peak performance on your own. An important part of your life strategy is how much you will invest in acquiring knowledge and developing skills in addition to formal education.
This one’s not about reading books and having meaningful conversations and so on, but about developing hard core knowledge and skills that can help you provide value to the market. It’s about knowledge, skills and talents you can sell on the market. It’s about certified or systematic courses you take that take a longer time to develop.
- To what extent you will develop your competence level
- Talents you have and will exploit
- Knowledge you’ll acquire
- Skills you’ll develop (programming, accounting, cooking…)
- Soft skills you’ll develop (teamwork, leadership, sales, organization, EQ, SQ…)
- Levels of creativity you will employ
- Languages you’ll learn etc.
Information intake and communicating strategy
Besides formal and informal education, you constantly intake information and communicate. As the saying goes: you should watch what goes in and comes out of your mouth.
In addition to that, there is another important fact and that is garbage in, garbage out. Therefore your information intake strategy is a very important part of your life. Things that you focus on grow, so you must be very careful on which information you will focus.
The second thing is that as much as you have your personal fashion style, so you have your personal communication style. You should be aware of it and decide where you should make improvements and how to develop it to the full.
Communication is a very important part of life and the better you are at communicating, the more you can achieve and the better you can resolve conflicts. Thus you should carefully consider how much you will invest in your own effective communication style.
There is one more important thing you have to consider when it comes to your communication style. You may be shy and it probably has to do something with your past. Nevertheless when you are an adult and aware of it, shyness becomes your choice and can burden your life progress. Deal with it if necessary.
- Level of listening to others
- Books you read and how much you read
- Personal infostructure: Media you consume – what and how much (TV, news, blogs, movies…)
- Your communication style
- The level to which you will develop your communication skills
- Level of shyness / openness and how it goes together you being introvert or extrovert
- Complimenting and criticizing others
- Swearing and gossiping – yes or no and how much
Your past and relationships with your primary family
As mentioned before, you have to deal with your past to some extent and dealing with your primary family (meaning your mother, father, brother and sisters and even your grandparents) is also a part of this. If you had a loving home and you have the same values as your parents, then this may not be a big deal. It’s good if family really feels like family, the safest and the most loving environment.
But that’s often not the case. In some cases the worst things that can happen to people are their parents. Families can be dysfunctional, love can be replaced with abuse and the values you have can be a complete opposite to those of your parents and siblings, from politics and religion to discipline and all other areas of life.
In those cases, it’s very difficult to make a decision of how much and in what kind of a relationship you will be with your parents. Still, you have to decide.
Another important part of your life strategy is how much you will lean on your long-time past, family history and bloodline. Well, if you are of royal blood, that’s definitely an important part of your life.
If your ancestors came from another, completely different country or even continent, it can also be an important part of your life. Many people decide to explore their history and roots and look for strong history traits to lean on. How important your family history is to you is your choice.
Every one of us has also experienced more or less shocking events in the past that can become a burden in our lives. Mistakes your parents made, accidents that happen, unfortunate events etc. We all have such shocking events in life and have to deal with them somehow. How we will deal with the negative situations of our past is a part of our life strategy.
- How much you will keep in touch with your parents
- How close you will be to your parents
- How much you will keep in touch with your siblings / grandparents / relatives
- How close you will be to your siblings / grandparents / relatives
- The level of leaning on your family history, ancestors and bloodline
- Dealing with unfortunate events from your childhood and youth
- Which family patterns you will strengthen and which demolish
- Making a decision about when you will move out of your primary home
Intimate relationships and your secondary family
The spouse you will choose to spend the rest of your life with will have the biggest influence on your life. You are very much shaped by people who surround you and your intimate partner is number one in this regard.
There are also many things you have to decide before and after committing to one person. Before that you have to decide how serious you will be about relationships, to what extent does finding the right partner lie in your hands and to what extent is this the domain of a “higher power” and so on. What qualities will you look for in your partner, how much emphasis will you give to physical looks, what are the deal breakers, how long will you stay in dysfunctional relationships and so on.
The clearer the picture that you have about what you want, the easier it will be to make decisions. But of course if you believe that a greater power must take care of your love life, you will be much less proactive. Tough decisions never end.
Even after getting into a relationship, you again have certain behavioral patterns and decisions you have to make and be aware of. How you see traditional gender roles, how much you will invest into a partnership, what you want to get out of it, is marriage important to you and so on.
Your attitude towards cheating and missteps is also an important part of intimate relationships. It’s not easy to spend decades with the same person and you have to decide if it’s worth it and what kind of mistakes you’re willing to tolerate.
Together with your partner you will have to decide what kind of a family you want to create. You have to decide how organized, loving, safe, caring etc. your family will be. You have to choose what kind of a home you will create, how you will decorate it, which rituals you will celebrate, who will do which chores and so on. If you didn’t have a choice with how your primary home looked, now you have it.
- Is love in your hands or in the hands of a greater power?
- Your dating strategy
- Qualities you look for in your partner (personality traits, common hobbies…)
- Is a partnership fixed or can it grow?
- The extent of traditional gender roles and gender equality at home
- Home chores
- The importance of a formal marriage
- Breaking-up attitude in partnership and ending marriage if necessary
- Morality in partnership
- Your personal life and privacy in relationships (will you share everything to your partner…)
- The financial aspect of a household
- Sex life
Your sex life
Right after your intimate relationships, it makes sense to mention your sex life as well. I know sex is a very primary force and we act on instinct, but we can still control a big part of our sex life with the decisions we make.
If we listen only to our instinct, we are on autopilot that’s maybe not even leading us to our true goals. As mentioned, even if we don’t have a strategy, we have some sort of a strategy. In this case having no strategy means yielding to our urges. But to have the best sex of your life, you have to do much more than that.
Regarding your sex life, you will have to make the following decisions:
- Satisfaction with your own body and your attitude towards nudity
- Openness about your sexual orientation
- Approximate number of sex partners you want to have
- How regularly you want to have sex in your life
- How well you have to know a person to have sex with them
- How much effort you will put into pleasing your partner and how much you want to receive
- How much is sex a part of love and how much it can be only fun
- Kinks you have and want to make happen
- All the things you want to experience and try in your sex life
- Tools and techniques you will use to spice up your sex life (toys, poses…)
- Dealing with negative emotions regarding your sex life (guilt, shame…)
- Your attitude towards pornography
- Your attitude towards prostitution
Relationship with your kids
The relationship you have with your kids is probably the most sensitive and responsible part of your life strategy. You create a new life and you have the power to break or make an innocent person. Nobody lives an easy life, but you can make a decision of how much love and support you will offer to your kids and how you will make their life more beautiful and fulfilling; or not.
Thus an important part of your life strategy is choosing why you will have kids, how many of them you will have and how you will raise them. Some people have kids for the economic benefit (poorer countries), some to fill their emotional gaps, others to create a loving family and pass on what they’ve learned in life and prepare kids for their own challenges. There are many reasons why to have kids and you will have to find your own. Both having kids and not having them can be the most selfish thing you do in life, depending on your why’s and how’s.
- The number of kids you want to have in life
- Reasons to have kids in life
- How will you raise your kids (and how you will not raise them)
- The amount of time you spent with your kids
- Financial and other support you will offer to your kids
- How well will you prepare your kids for life challenges
- What will you do if for some reason you can't have kids (adoption etc.)
- Helping and empowering misfortune children
Money and investment strategy
I probably don’t have to emphasize that being able to acquire and keep assets is one of key skills in life and everybody has to deal with it, whether you want to or not. Some people love it, others hate it. It’s pretty much the same with money as it is with diet and health. Instant gratification messes up our rationality and plans.
The wealth of your primary family and the money blueprint you’ve inherited have an important influence on how you will shape your strategy for dealing with money. But at the end of the day, it’s once again a question of mastering yourself and making choices.
First you have to decide how you will make your income by providing value. You can either be employed, self-employed, a business owner or an investor.
You have to decide how much money you will spend and how much money you will invest in order to gain passive and portfolio income. To do that, you need a savings and investment strategy. You have to deal with debt, curb your buying decisions and much more. If you are born poor, it’s not your fault, but if you die poor, it probably is your fault. If you decide for the latter, be aware that you’ve chosen it yourself.
- How will you make money (employed, self-employed, business owner, investor)
- Types of earnings (active income, passive income, portfolio income)
- Will your income come from wealth creation or welath extortion or both
- The balance between monetary and social value created
- Insurance strategy
- Saving strategy
- Investment strategy
- Debt strategy
- Buying / Renting home
- Luxuries you will afford
- How long you will keep things (living minimalist life or not)
- Inheritance strategy (receiving from your parents and giving to your kids)
- Joint assets with your partner (to what extent)
- Attitude towards government and taxes (optimizing taxes etc.)
Your money and earning potential are very much connected to your career, achievements and social status. First of all, your career strategy depends on your ambitions. The more ambitious you are, the more sound and superior a strategy you need in terms of career and in all other areas of life.
You have to decide whether you will be a leader or a follower. You have to decide about the industries you want to contribute to and work in, the type of organizations you want to function in, whether you want to start your own business, whether you’d like to have business partners and so on.
Your career also strongly depends on your execution and political skills. The bigger the organization you work for and the closer to the government you are, the more political skills you need. And you can either use political skills to do good or to manipulate for personal gain only. Again, it’s a part of your strategy and choice. Your advancement in career is also very much connected to your personal marketing and sales strategy.
- Level of your ambitions
- Leader or follower
- Industries you want to work in
- Type of organizations you want to work for (size, type, profit/non-profit…)
- Starting your own business – yes or no
- Business partner strategy
- Relationships with authorities
- Political skills
- Execution skills
- Personal marketing strategy – how aggressive you will be with personal marketing
Your social strategy
We are social animals. We cannot survive without other people. Relationships fulfill us and make us happy. Nevertheless some people are introverts, others are extroverts. Some people prefer business relationships, others personal. Some people like to do sports with friends, others like to only have fun.
You need to know what social relationships mean to you, how much you are prepared to invest into relationships and what do you want to get out of them.
It’s also no secret that you can benefit from having good social skills and developing strong social connections. It’s called acquiring social capital and it’s a part of your social strategy. The people you want to get to know, how you will make sure that people hear about you, who will you spend time with, who are you going to call when you’re in trouble and need something, all these are important questions you should find an answer to for yourself.
- Introvert / Extrovert
- Business / Personal Relationships
- When and why to socialize
- People you will spend most of your time with (who, their character, deal breakers…)
- How often you will change your friends and social circles
- Social intelligence and social skills
- Social capital and networking strategy
- Your social life online
- Who will you call in times of trouble
- Who can help you in different areas of life
- How much you will invest into helping your friends
Hobbies and having fun strategy
According to my beliefs, we are here on this planet to (1) create, (2) learn and (3) have fun. Therefore hobbies, relaxation and having fun are also a part of your life strategy. Decisions on this area of life should be easy since we all love to have fun, but they are not always.
You have to make important decision, how much time will you spend on your hobbies and having fun and how much on developing your career and being responsible adult dealing with all important obligations.
The line between how much you should invest into your future and how much fun you want to have is conflicting, especially in your youth. In my opinion it should be “and” not “or” and while doing that, keeping the balance. But again, you have to find the right answer for yourself.
- What relaxes you and how often you will relax
- How much free time will you have in life? (work – life balance)
- How do you spend your free time?
- Hobbies you are going to try and do in life
- Alcohol, drugs and other substances use / abuse
- Games and gambling affinity
- How much you smile
Travel and transportation strategy
First of all, you need all kinds of transport in your life, moving from home to work and vice versa, traveling to different destinations and so on. You have to decide whether you will own a car or not, how safe your driving style will be, how much you will spend on your car, whether you will have one or two cars in your household and so on.
Car is usually the second biggest expense besides your home. If you decide not to own a car, you need to have a transportation strategy, especially how to use public transport and how much money to spend on it.
The desire to travel around the world is also a part of human nature. You have to decide where you want to travel, which countries you want to see and why. Whether it’s because of the culture, the nature or everything. Maybe you have a limited budget but if the desire is strong enough, you will find a way. In my youth, I never had a budget to travel personally, so I combined travelling for business with pleasure.
- Car decisions (number of cars in household, how much to spend on car etc.)
- Is car a status symbol for you or not
- Your driving style
- Use of public transportation
- Countries you want to travel to
- How much to travel, travel budget, with whom to travel
- Why you want to travel
- How you will finance your travels
- Business / personal travels
Home and your surroundings strategy
One of the biggest costs in your life will be buying/renting and arranging your home. Thus it’s not only a tough decision to make, but also a very expensive one. Nevertheless you have to choose where you want to live sooner or later in your life, from which country and which city to choosing between a house and a flat or maybe even a boat if you prefer living on the sea.
After choosing your home, you also have to decide how you will decorate it. It’s part of a creative process, where you of course want to make your surroundings to your liking. You should feel as good as possible in your home.
You also have some influence on how your office will look. Thus you have to make a decision of how will you decorate it and maybe even install some elements to support you at your goals, like a Kanban board or something.
- Where do you want to live (county, state, countryside, city…)?
- House / Flat and size of your home
- City / Countryside
- Your home and its interior design
- Your office design
- Tidiness and cleanliness of your surroundings (order, creative chaos,…)
Strategy toward animals and nature
We are a part of nature, the planet Earth is basically a symbolical mother of us all. And we share this world with animals. Therefore you have to decide on your standpoint towards nature and animals.
There are some very tough decisions to make and there are no easy answers, especially when it comes to global warming, waste and other damage we do to our planet. To balance that, you have to make more pleasant decisions in life as well, like whether you want to own pets, how nature relaxes you the most and so on.
- Owning pets
- Eating animals and animal products – yes or no
- Keeping animals in captivity (circus, zoo etc.)
- Supporting animals in shelters and issues regarding animals close to extinction
- Dealing with dangerous or annoying animals (beasts, insects…)
- Global warming and other related issues
- Using or overusing natural resources (electricity, water…)
- Personal waste management and level of tidiness
- Relaxing in nature (where, how, do you prefer mountains, forests…)
Art and culture
Culture and art have a great influence on our lives, even if it’s not that obvious anymore, especially due to all the instant pop culture. Nevertheless, art and culture fulfill our lives, make us more human, creative, understanding and civilized.
If you could say it in words, there would be no reason to paint (or do any other kind of art). E. Hopper
Art is a way of reaching our hearts and expressing ourselves in both ways, be it as creators of art or consumers. Still we have to make a decision about the extent to which we will let culture and art influence our lives.
- Subcultures you decide to belong to
- Cultural rituals you decide to follow
- Values you take from your culture (religious, national…)
- Using symbols in your personal and professional life
- Music you listen to
- Expressing yourself in artistic ways (drawing, painting, sculpting, dancing…)
- Traditions you will strengthen and traditions you will demolish
- Your personal style
Using technology and your digital trail strategy
In the last century, technology has become an important part of our lives and it will have an even bigger influence in the future. Technology is a tool like fire: you can cook a meal with it or you can burn yourself.
In much the same way some people see technology as the biggest enemy of humanity and others see it as the biggest savior. The fact is that technology is here and you will have to decide how big of an affinity you will have for it and how you will benefit from using it.
The second fact is that the more you use technology, the more of a digital trail you leave. It seems like you are living two lives, the real one and the digital one. Most people can be googled and “facebooked”. Digital life will stay online even after you die. Therefore you’ll have to decide what kind of a digital trail you’ll leave behind you.
- Your attitude towards technology
- Technology skills you will develop and invest into
- Applications you will use in your everyday life
- How often you will unplug yourself from the online world (digital detox)
- Your digital life strategy and management
- Your attitude towards artificial intelligence
- Convergence of human tissue and technology
- Using robots to do work
Your nation, country and political system
Virtual lines drawn on the map were an important part of life for the past three millennia. Now the world is becoming more and more flat and connected. You will have to decide how loyal you want to be to your country and which political system you see as the best option.
You have to decide how much of government intervention you think is adequate, whether you are pro military or against it, what your opinion about taxes is and how much you will optimize your government contributions (your taxes).
- Belonging to your country
- Political issues (capitalism, socialism…)
- Racial issues
- Military issues
- Taxes and government intervention
- Economic inequality
- Conspiracy theories
Spirituality, religion and asking for help
Religion is maybe even one of taboo topics, especially because you could feel guilty if you have different religious beliefs than your parents or the majority of people in your country/area do.
But again, at the end of the day, it’s about your life and you will have to decide if you believe in god and how strict you will be at following your god’s word and religious rules.
You can be a good person and atheist and you can be very religious and do harm to others for personal gain (think Italian mafia). What you believe is actually a part of your reality and your right. In my view the only important thing is that you aren’t doing any harm to other people and breaking any laws, no matter what your religious beliefs are.
While people more or less do respect religious beliefs, it’s a little bit different with spirituality. Maybe yoga and meditation have quite a good reputation, but you have many practices that are considered strange and fake. At the end of the day, it’s again up to you what you believe and if it helps you to live a better life, why not.
You have to decide about your attitude towards spiritual things, from astrology and bioenergy to fortune telling and even ghosts. As mentioned before, if you believe in it, it’s probably a part of your reality and you have a complete right to it.
Here is one more important thing I have to mention and you have to decide on. An important part of your strategy is whether you will ask for help, who you will ask for help and when and how comfortable do you feel that other people do work instead of you.
Never forget that if you don’t create value, someone else has to create it for you; how acceptable is that to you? How much do you think you have to care for yourself and how much you think your parents, government or even God should help you? Are you prepared to go begging if necessary? How difficult does your situation have to be in order for you to ask other people for help and is your honour in conflict with asking for help?
- Believing in god
- Your religious beliefs (belonging to a religion, changing family religion…)
- Are we alone in the universe?
- Believing in supernatural forces
- Engaging in spiritual activities (meditation, fortunetelling, astrology, ghost calling…)
- When will you ask other people for help?
- How much will you depend on others and how much will you rely on yourself?
- How do you feel about other people doing work instead of you or to serve you?
Taking care of your emotional body
There is a special reason why I’ve dedicated an entire headline to an emotional body. It’s because emotions color our lives. Emotions drive and fuel our passions. Emotions take us to life’s highs and lows. Emotions are the main reason why we can inspire and lead other people. Still we usually understand our physical body and our mind much better than our emotional body, especially men.
A part of your life strategy is how good your connection with emotions will be and whether you’ll use emotions as positive guidelines in life or you will see them as a burden. How much you will show your emotions and how well you will engage the emotions of other people is a part of your life strategy.
- Being connected to your emotions
- Expressing your emotions
- Emotional intelligence
- Confronting with your fears (being courageous or living a life in an emotional cage)
Dealing with enemies, bad and evil in the world
Evil is the saddest but very realistic part of our world. There is evil in all of us, but since times are becoming more and more transparent and survivable, we also tend to curb the evil in us. Nevertheless, there are still horror stories that are happening daily, terrible things like war, rape, abuse, murder, terrorism and so on.
It’s a part of life we cannot deny, no matter how much we want to. Maybe (I hope not) you’ll even have to deal with some of these horror stories at some point in your life. And it’s not only about you. Will you, for example, stand up for people who are going through hell at this very moment?
There are also lighter negative aspects of this world you have to face more often. People you love will die, you may have an accident or face other types of burden and sorrow. Besides that, everyone has enemies, you have people in your life who are prepared to argue with you and if not that, negotiate with you or sue you.
A part of your life strategy is how you will protect yourself and how much you will fight, run or let things go. Which battles do you plan to choose? It’s not easy but it’s also worth to consider how you will deal with tougher situations that can or will happen in your life (loss, failures…). Think about how you will handle them.
- Dealing with your inner evil
- Dealing with personal tragedies
- Dealing with evil in the world
- Strategy for owning arms
- Negative attitudes and opinions from others
- Your negotiation strategy
- Your arguing level strategy (how far will you go, how much will you quarrel etc.)
- Your personal legal protection
Your legacy and giving back strategy
We’ve talked about asking for help, but you should also consider giving help. You have to decide how altruistic you will be and how much of your resources you will invest into making the world a better place to live for all of us.
You have to decide what causes you will fight for and how you want to influence the world in a positive way. A part of your life strategy is to choose whether you will donate money or not and whether you will spend your free time volunteering or not.
Politics is also a part of your social engagement and legacy. Maybe going into politics is actually even the best way, besides donating money, to influence the quality of life on this planet in the future.
When we talk about politics, it all starts with voting and continues with supporting different political parties or even joining them or running for different functions. In this case, it’s not so much about career advancement as it is about sincere interest to do good and leave the generations to come a better place to live.
The third thing you have to consider is your life legacy. One legacy that you’ll leave behind is your digital footprint, but is that enough? Do you want to make any bigger contributions to art, science, sports or any other area or life?
Do you want to change the course of your family or maybe fight passionately for a specific cause that will make the world a better place? There are many problems in this world you can fight against, from poverty, famine, child abuse to deadly diseases etc.
Do you want to be an example of a successful person in business? What do you want to be remembered for the most? Answering this question is also a very important part of your life strategy.
- Your contribution to art, science, sports, business and other areas
- Social and service organizations
- Donating money and time to charity
- Involvement in politics (voting, running)
- Attitude toward world problems
- Things you want to leave behind and how you want to be remembered the most
- Thing you will create and fight for
When do you want to give up?
The final thing you have to decide on in the course of your life is when you want to give up. Some people never want to stop working, others dream about retiring from day one at the job. Again, it’s about you, your values and your decisions.
In addition to that, the older you are, the more health issues and risks you have to face. At the end you have to decide how long you will try to prolong your life and what your attitude towards death will be.
How afraid are you and what are your beliefs concerning what happens after death? Is it all over, do you reincarnate, do you go to heaven or hell or something else? Maybe it’s part of your religion, maybe what you feel happens after death is completely your personal decision, but you have to believe something, there is no other way.
Your attitude towards death and the afterlife is a very important belief and a part of your life strategy, since it can influence all other decisions you make in different areas of life. Nevertheless it’s quite obvious that all religious belief systems as well as non-religious systems try to influence you to be as good of a person as possible, despite the fact that life is neither easy nor fair.
- Retiring from work
- Trying to prolong your life
- Your attitude toward death
- Beliefs about afterlife
- How good a person you will be in life
We’ve looked at 24 different elements of your life strategy. I am sure there are still some minor things I’ve forgotten about. Still, if you analyze your beliefs and build a strong and superior life strategy for all the mentioned areas of life, I’m sure you’ll be very well off.
Knowing who you are and clearly knowing what you want out of life is an integral part and the first step towards a superior life strategy.
But it’s not an easy task. If it were easy, everyone would live a happy and successful life. Knowing who you are and clearly knowing what you want out of life is an integral part and the first step towards a superior life strategy.
The main purpose of this 24-areas framework is to help you shape your own superior life strategy that will lead you towards experiencing as much as possible in your written life vision.
Do the exercise
Below you can find a spreadsheet with all the bullet point from this article. It will help you systematically analyze your beliefs, your life strategy, show you where you are missing information and which areas you are strong in. You should write down your thoughts, goals and intentions at the end of every row.
AgileLeanLife – Life Strategy Template (xls)
In the second step ask yourself the following for every single thing that you have written down: why?
- Why do I believe that?
- Why do I want to live my life like that?
- Where does that come from?
- Is that truly me?
- Do I know enough about it or should I read more before I make my final decision?
- Does it lead me towards my goals?
- Am I doing something good for myself, the people I love and humanity in general as well as for nature and maybe even other living beings?
- How would my life look like with a different kind of belief and strategy?
- Where could I make improvements?
Happy thinking and analyzing.